Everyday should be Mother’s Day but as the official Mother’s Day is upon us, I took a moment to pause and reflect on the significance of the important role a mother plays in all our lives. Mother’s Day is celebrated in 40 countries around the world — because the work of a mother is precious in any culture.
In our country, working moms are the norm. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, of the almost 75 million women who make up the U.S. workforce, 75 percent are mothers with children under 18. And, mothers are the primary or sole earners for 40 percent of households with children under 18. That means, more than ever, moms are dividing their time and energy between home and workplace.
We all strive for perfection, we aim to bring our best selves to work, to be fully present with our families and contribute to our communities. This becomes a constant balancing act. Surrounding yourself with positivity, a mom tribe that is supportive and non-judgmental and giving oneself time to rest and recharge are all key wellness.
Slowing down, being mindful, taking care of one’s mental and physical health are practices critical to be a good role model, and mother. It’s that mindfulness that led me to institute policies at my companies that focus on holistic health, reasonable hours and support when life seems to overwhelm. In my business, we offer yoga, gym memberships, healthy food options, nutrition counseling, meditation classes, and more. I do this because I believe healthy minds and bodies make for healthy employees and a healthy business. As you can see from this employee wellness video that appeared in the American Health Journal, happy family lives bring happy employees into the office every day. Letting working mothers know I appreciate their struggle goes a long way in providing peace of mind. Demonstrating unity with them and their unique challenges is my practical effort to support them.
Another way for me to demonstrate my appreciation for mothers is through a charity drive my BLISS car washes in Orange County are holding on Mother’s Day weekend. In support of Clear Charity, BLISS car washes are donating $3 dollars for every Mother’s Day membership sold over the weekend.
Clear Charity is an Orange County, Calif. non-profit organization that is working to close the what they call the “diaper gap,” by providing quality diapers to predominantly low-income families through their subsidized programs. Diapers are a necessity for a baby, and, as every parent knows, they go through a lot of them. However, according to Clear Charity, one-third of American families struggle to afford enough diapers. Disposable diapers can cost an average of $936 per child per year; for lower income families, this cost equals to 14 percent of their annual income. That doesn’t seem fair. To learn more about the #DiaperGap, you can visit www.diapergap.org.
The lack of fresh, clean water in many parts of the world is a daily challenge for mothers. In some countries, that’s an unfortunate reality. Because I’ve been alerted to the need, on Mother’s Day weekend, I am reflecting on the plight of mothers in Niger. It’s one of the world’s poorest countries, where 61 percent of rural villagers lack safe water, and one in seven children die before the age of five.
Can you imagine not even having enough water to care for your young child safely? In Niger, women and girls suffer the most as they are responsible for gathering fresh water for their families, walking four to six miles a day to find it. Most, therefore, don’t go to school and 85 percent of Nigerian women don’t read or write. Because of this terrible injustice and the commendable work of Wells Bring Hope, I have pledged to donate a freshwater well to the organization in celebration of every new BLISS car wash I open.
Wells Bring Hope is a non-profit organization that was founded by a Los Angeles philanthropist, Barbara Goldberg. To date, it has funded 568 wells and transformed the lives of over a half million people with safe water in Niger.
On this Mother’s Day, I honor my own mother, who raised me to care about others and work to serve them. I honor my wife, the mother of my two wonderful children, who has been my steadfast and graceful partner in life. And I honor all mothers because all deserve appreciation for their sacrifices and utmost important work to create and nurture human life. This May, I invite you to show your appreciation in any way – big or small– and share your love with a mother you know.
David Delrahim is a businessman, philanthropist and CEO of BLISS car wash.